28 January 2005
The number of tourists who entered Mozambique in December from South Africa increased by more than 120% in comparison to the same period the previous year. These dramatic statistics were just released by Alfandegas Mozambique who keep exact records of all tourists who visit that country.
More than 157 000 people crossed into Mozambique from South Africa, 126% up on the previous year. The total number of passengers crossing both ways numbered 246 173. All indications are that a vast number of these tourists will travel via Tzaneen and Phalaborwa and other parts of the Limpopo Province into the Kruger National Park (KNP) and onto Mozambique once the Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park and the road through the Park to Mozambique are fully operational.
Meanwhile construction on the Mozambican side of the border in the Kruger Park is progressing well. It is doubtful however, whether the opening target date of April will be met. Although no official decisions have been made yet, indications are that tourists travelling through the Park to Mozambique will be required to sleep at least one night in the Park en route.
Since the speed limit of 50km/h on tarred roads and 40km/h on gravel roads in the KNP will be implemented, it will be virtually impossible to use the transfrontier park simply as a quick alternative route.
The distance to be travelled at the required legal speeds will rule out chances of a one-day trip to Mozambique via the KNP. A levy on boats is also considered while absolutely no commercial traffic will be allowed through the KNP. Palabora & Hoedspruit Herald will keep readers informed on all developments surrounding the road and access to Mozambique via the KNP.
Palabora & Hoedspruit Herald - 21/01/2005